By Dave Read, July 29, 2023 – In a single instance of gaslighting, when he tells his faithful fans becoming a grandfather has inspired him to quit smoke, only to sell them fire pits, Snoop Dogg shows that his audience is as indifferent to honesty and as desperate to belong as MAGAs are.
Whereas one monetizes love of country, the other monetizes familial love, and both want to widen the gap between their billions and the tiny wad of benjamins their worshipful fans may cling to.
Even though Snoop Dogg’s audience probably chuckled and insisted that he didn’t hoodwink them, the sad truth is that the episode demonstrates the pervasiveness of marketease, the language of the marketplace. Trouble with that is the primacy of profit, a gravitational force that salutes money for her own sake.
Just now, there is a nascent movement among the over-monied cohort called Effective Altruism, as if they’re re-imagining the Golden Rule. It’s most notorious evangelist is Bankman-Fried, pastor of the collapsed crypto cathedral FTX. But, as Bob Dylan proclaimed sixty years ago, “money doesn’t talk, it swears.”
To rock the merch and manners of pop stars is to purchase membership in something bigger, something grander, something that will do for the spirit what being an anonymous drudge in the consumer economy will never do.
It demonstrates that, a mere two generations since the arrival of TV, the ubiquity of commercial speech has erased from public memory cultural wisdom such as the fable of the boy who cried wolf. It is as if centuries of civilization have been replaced by the one law of the marketplace, caveat emptor – let the buyer beware.
Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.
How long will we allow promoters to get away with bait and switch, with saying one thing but meaning something else? Can we demand honesty in the marketplace of politics while dishonesty thrives there, or while it makes so much bank in the marketplace of stuff?